Creating high impact workshops
Have you attended or facilitated a workshop that you felt had very poor results?
Two agile coaches I work with have asked me in recent weeks if I could help them prepare a workshop for their teams or organisations. When we explored the situation together, the same thing happened with both of them: it turned out that they had asked me after their teams had asked them. It was a reaction to what was wanted from them.
In my opinion this denotes some trust from the group to the agile coach, however there is a danger that the agile coach gives the group what the group wants, which may not necessarily match what the group needs. In the worst case, the workshop can end up with a loss of trust towards the agile coach, because the workshop does not generate the effects that the group expects.
That is why it is important to try to ensure that these types of requests to an agile coach generate the most value for the team, even if this sometimes means not doing directly what the team is asking for.
For me there are two key questions that if answered before starting to design the workshop, we can prepare it with a greater chance of having a positive impact:
What is the context of the group? It is important to know what the group would like to change, to understand what the current problem is and in what environment it occurs.
What is the hypothesis the group is working with? When a group asks for something, they do it because they think that with this something they will achieve something else.
What do you think of my method? What is your way of preparing the workshops? Do you ask yourself any questions to have a greater impact?